Community dynamics in restored salt marshes

Salt marshes are important coastal ecosystems because they provide many services to surrounding areas. Due to the high fertility of salt marsh soil, they have a long history of being converted to farmland in Maritime Canada. In recent years, there has been growing interest in restoring salt marshes to protect against coastal erosion, mitigate sea level rise, and provide increased habitat for birds, fish, etc.

Environmental productivity patterns of the Salish Sea

Pacific salmon are important from ecological, economic, social and cultural perspectives, but many species in the Salish Sea have seen drastic decrease in marine survival rate in recent decades, likely linked to reduced survival of the young stages of salmon due to a combination of environmental, food web changes, and human impacts. This activity will provide an ecosystem-level analysis of how the environmental productivity of the Salish Sea has changed in recent decades with focus on the implications this has had for salmon populations in the area.

Understanding the role of trees and topography in determining power outage frequency across London, ON

While trees are regularly maintained to prevent damage from branches to power lines, power outages caused by vegetation still occur, and these outages are more common in some areas of London than in others. This work will correlate tree species-specific growth rates, tree species distribution maps, and topographical maps with the frequency of vegetation-related power outages across London, ON to determine potential drivers of tree growth (such as species identity, tree size, and indices of water availability) that should be accounted for in future vegetation maintenance plans.

Understanding attitudes, beliefs, behavioural intentions, and behaviours related to sensitive environments

The proposed research project will take place on three nature reserves owned by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) (Miscou, NB – 780 acres, Escuminac, NB – 630 acres, Salmonier, NL – 440 acres), where NCC wants to understand how the land is being used by the community, the motivation and beliefs of those using it, and options for behaviour change to prevent damage to sensitive habitats.

Grazing patterns of bison vs. cattle in response to management strategies designed to improve habitat for Species at Risk

It is well established that livestock producers are effective land stewards and contribute to high productivity and wildlife habitat on grazed lands. The effectiveness of many management practices are established, but uncertainty remains, particularly in interactions between practices at large-scales. We propose to track grazing patterns of bison and cattle using GPS collars at the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s (NCC) Old Man on His Back Conservation Area (OMB) in response to various strategies (e.g. burning, fencing, weed control) over 3 years at multiple scales of observation (e.g.

Tracking the effects of neonicotinoid insecticides on migratory birds

Declines in migratory bird populations have been linked to a range of complex environmental factors, including the dramatic increase in application of neurotoxic neonicotinoid insecticides in recent decades. Neonicotinoids are used as seed treatments in a wide variety of Canadian crops, and consumption of treated seeds could result in poor navigation and migration delays in migratory birds. However, the influence of insecticides on cognition and patterns of movement is poorly understood.

Identifying and Quantifying Analytes in Real Life Environments with Chemical Noise

Developing smart technology determines the future economy of societies nowadays. Electronic nose is a device that audits the chemicals and transforms it to human odor perception. One of the most challenging steps to transform electronic nose to smart nose is its patter recognition machinery, because electronic nose data are imprecise and noisy. This pattern recognition machinery builds an empirical statistical model using machine learning algorithms over electronic nose data, to transform the these data to human odour perception.

Sustainability Employee Engagement Research Project

In the summer of 2017, GM of Canada will be launching several employee engagement campaigns pertaining to sustainability goals. This project will determine how the control of different variables could lead to more or less employee engagement. These variables include the communication medium, the reward mechanism, and the depth of technical detail. By better understanding of what communication practices lead to effective employee engagement, GM can better tailor future sustainability campaigns to bring about larger impact.

Quantifying Fishway Passage Success of Alewife, Alosa pseudoharengus, and its relationship to Marine Nutrient Transfer from the Ocean to Freshwater Ecosystems

Alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus) is a key species in the ecology of the upper Bay of Fundy, Canada, that provides food to numerous predators and scavengers. Each year, Alewife migrate into freshwater systems to spawn in lakes. Dams and fishways often impede the migration of Alewife, which can have detrimental effects on Alewife populations, as well as nutrient exchange between marine and freshwater ecosystems.

Characteristics of PM2.5 in Prince George neighborhoods for personal monitoring purposes

Reports of air monitoring since 1994 show the annual average PM2.5 concentration in the Prince George airshed is one of the highest in the province. Although a large effort is underway to monitor ambient levels of PM2.5 , there has been no systematic study on personal exposure at the neighborhood level. Furthermore, there are no data on chemical composition (in particular elemental analysis) of PM2.5 in the neighborhoods.